Connect with us


Uproar over NRC panel and Buddhist reform

Legacy Phuket Gazette




– Thailand news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Uproar over NRC panel and Buddhist reform
The Nation / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: A network of monks and Buddhist followers yesterday officially urged Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha to cancel within 15 days the National Reform Council (NRC) committee on the protection of Buddhism.

The move is seen as a strike back at the committee, which has openly questioned the Dhammakaya Temple, its abbot Phra Dhammachayo, and related figures.

PM Prayut did not directly say whether he would heed the network’s demand. When asked about the issue, he said the reform of Buddhist administration had not yet started.

NRC chairman Thienchay Kirananda said he saw no reason to abolish the committee.

The Thai Network of Buddhist Organizations submitted its petition to PM Prayut, which details its demands via a government complaint-receiving center yesterday. It also submitted a similar petition to NRC chairman Thienchay later in the day.

Phra Methi Dhammajahn, an assistant abbot of Mahathat Yuwaratrangsarit Temple and a vice rector at Mahachulalongkornra-javidyalaya University, led the network’s members in submitting the petitions.

“If this committee continues with its work, I believe monks across the country will rise up,” he said.

The petition said most of the committee’s members were religious and political extremists.

It also pointed out that while the committee had the duty to draft a new law governing monks, it did not allow monks any participation.

‘Divides will deepen in society, among monks’

On the committee are its chairman Paiboon Nititawan and several members including Chirmsak Pinthong.

“Established just a month ago, this committee has already caused so many problems,” Phra Methi Dhammajahn said. “If it stays on, divides will deepen in society as well as among Buddhist monks.”

Committee chairman Paiboon Nititawan has lately made clear that the panel will work on the guidelines on the management of temple funds, which are now exempt from tax.

The committee has also shown special attention to the Dhammakaya Temple and Phra Dhammachayo, who was once accused of embezzlement.

Phra Methi Dhammajahn insisted his network did not intend to protect any particular person or any particular temple. He also said he would welcome any investigation into his background as long as it was conducted with an honest intent.

Asked about reports that Phra Dhammachayo and the Sangha Supreme Council (SSC) were linked, Phra Methi Dhammajahn said: “I can’t comment because I am not on the council.”

His petition also demanded that Paiboon and Phra Buddha Isara, the abbot of Or Noi Temple, stop offending the council and Buddhism.

Paiboon has said lately that his committee does not agree with a resolution that the SSC passed in 2006 in favor of Phra Dhammachayo. Phra Buddha Isara, meanwhile, has called for a boycott of the SSC.

Dhammakaya Temple has decided not to comment on the uproar. Phra Sanitwong Vudhiwaso yesterday said the temple had no plan to give any interview or hold a press conference on the issue.

Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam, who is now assigned to address conflict over whether Phra Dhammachayo has already been automatically defrocked over embezzlement allegations, asked for some time to work on this case.

“But the government will be able to handle it just in some aspects. One must understand that the SSC is the highest administrative body for monks under law.

“The Cabinet cannot interfere in its work. Even administrative courts do not have authority to rule on SSC resolutions,” he said.

— Phuket Gazette Editors


Want more Thailand news from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📝️ Join the conversation on Thaiger Talk - discuss news & life in our Thailand forums
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Chon Buri6 mins ago

Man returns lost parakeet, gets rewarded with BBQ

Thai Life38 mins ago

Thai Lion predicts football matches, other abilities currently unknown

Tourism41 mins ago

Reopening details for Phuket, Samui and beyond laid out

Phuket Sandbox July 1st


Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in July - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages in June!

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 hours ago

Multiple Chiang Rai schools to close after infections found

Thailand3 hours ago

Woman falls off building on Pattaya’s Walking Street

Tourism5 hours ago

Refinements to the Sandbox as the countdown continues to Thailand’s reopening

Coronavirus (Covid-19)6 hours ago

Covid UPDATE Sunday: 3,682 new infections and 20 covid-related deaths

Coronavirus (Covid-19)16 hours ago

Dole pineapple factory has 34 new Covid-19 cases, 413 total

Coronavirus (Covid-19)18 hours ago

Chinese Sinovac vaccine debuts in Singapore to high demand

Drugs19 hours ago

Drug smuggler caught in Kalasin with 300 kg of marijuana

Politics20 hours ago

Amendment to reform Constitution rejected by Parliament

Medical21 hours ago

Gender Health Clinic opens in Bangkok for transgender needs

Coronavirus (Covid-19)24 hours ago

30 million baht added to vaccine side effects compensation fund

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Plan for 16-week gap between AstraZeneca vaccines dropped

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

CCSA: 120 day reopening will proceed with conditions

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism4 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8